Dear E. Jean,
I’ve been with my boyfriend for a little over a year-and-a-half. I’d seen some video tapes in the top drawer of his dresser, while helping him put away laundry. Of course my curiosity got the best of me and I finally watched two of three tapes this last weekend when he was playing golf. I know I shouldn’t have viewed them; and now I deeply regret doing so.
One of the tapes was of my boyfriend and an old "friend" in a hotel having sex. The second tape was my boyfriend having sex with the same girl while someone else video taped it. At some points, it looked to be a fourth person in the room. The video was very graphic — I’ll spare you the details. The videos are dated from a couple years ago.
I realize this girl is from his past; but what bothers me is he still has the tapes! I can't get the images of him and her out of my head and it disgusts me to know he allowed someone to shoot the two of them having sex.
How can I tell him how I feel without admitting I violated his privacy and watched the tapes? Should I secretly throw them away? I love him very much and I want to move on but I don't know how I can while keeping my anger bottled up like this. Help!
To see E. Jean's answer,
MY DEAR KUMQUAT: Ugh! How horrendous! Give me your halfwit boyfriend’s address. I want to take a running kick at his XXX. Not because he enjoyed a couple of diverting romps, (after all humans lead deep, frenzied, poetic, dangerous, tender, erotic lives); and not because he had himself video’d by a dumb cluck (you must keep an open mind about this), but because he ignored the Rules of Sex Tapes: Shoot it. Savor it. Bury it.
Note: Putting the videos in the top drawer⎯⎯ Traditional in all cultures as belonging to the girl friend⎯⎯ Is not burying them. It’s advertising them.
The wisest course is to forget it. You’ve annihilated the old girlfriend from your mind, do the same with the tapes. However, if you absolutely can’t let the matter rest (and apparently you were nearly flayed alive when you viewed the images), speak to him. Confess you broke his trust and watched the tapes. Then calmly and intelligently ask him to get rid of them. Don’t bully. Don’t judge. Don’t uncork your “bottled up” anger like a jealous dingbat.
Or, you can do what I did when I found my boyfriend’s cache of photos in which he was seen in several surprising positions with a lithe young lady with a vivid shade of red hair. (And they weren’t yogi positions either.) When he walked in the front door after work, I admitted nothing. I simply met him with a smile and two glasses of Veuve Clicquot.
The fact that I was standing in front of a glittering shrine in which hung the sacred Speedo's belonging to two old boyfriends, both Olympic butterfliers, plus every photo I owned of me smooching other guys, said everything I needed to say. I handed him the glass. I also slipped him a particularly heinous shot of the redhead. As he leaned nearer the flickering candlelight of the shrine to examine the photo, I whispered: “I’ll put mine in storage, Mr. Moose Balls, if you put yours.”